AskPat 784 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up, everybody? Pat Flynn here. Welcome to Episode 784 of AskPat. Thank you so much for being here. As always, I'm here to help you by answering your online business questions, five days a week.
All right. Now, here's today's question from Brent.
Brent: Hey, Pat. This is Brent with Margarita Texas, www.MargaritaTexas.com. We have a product that's doing well through Amazon FBA, and we also sell it through our website. I was wondering your thoughts on if we should include on our website that the product is also available through Amazon and include our affiliate link that goes to our product? Thank you.
Pat: Hey, Brent. Thank you so much for the question. You know, I was thinking about this, and I thought it was a really easy answer, because for me, and I have contacts over at Amazon, because I asked them this exact question related to my book, Will It Fly? I said, “Hey. Is it okay if I promote my own book with my affiliate link on my website, or is that not a good thing to do?” They said, “Actually, we encourage this. Do it.” I was like, “Sweet. That's awesome,” but there was a big but in there. The big but was do not use your affiliate link in your emails. That goes against their terms of service or their policy, so you want to make sure that you don't do that. You can have the link on your website. If you are promoting your own products over email, you can promote your affiliate link.
This actually goes for every product that you promote through the Amazon Associates Program. You do not want to include the link, your Amazon affiliate link, no matter if it's masked or not, through Pretty Links or whatever. You don't want to include it in an email. You can have your account suspended if you do that. The workaround, and what's encouraged, and what they actually told me is have the link on your website somewhere. Then in your emails just link to that website.
This is what we started doing when I found this out, in my book club for example. My book club at www.PatsBookClub.com, you can sign up for that. We send out an email every single month of a new book that I'm reading or checking out. We used to put the affiliate link in the emails, which was a big no-no. Then what we ended up doing was creating a page, which you can see at www.PatsBookClub.com. If you scroll down, you'll see a list of the books of the month and also the previous books that are there, and all those links are affiliate links. Going back to selling your own product, yeah, you can have it be your own affiliate link.
The reason why I said I thought this was an easy answer, but not really, is because you want to make sure you know all the numbers involved. For a book or a digital product it kind of makes sense to have your own affiliate link on there for Amazon things, but when it comes to a physical product and there are things like fulfillment, and warehouse storage, and whether you have a team kind of working on those things. If sales through Amazon have a different avenue versus sales through your own website in terms of fulfillment, then you have to take all those numbers into account, because yes, you can earn a commission from selling your own product, but if, for example, there are transaction costs or you're sharing part of that fee with Amazon, then you have to understand whether or not it's worth it or not. If it's going through your own website, you're not going through a third party. You're going just through yourself. That is unless you're using other third party products to help fulfill on your own stuff.
Again, I can't give you a clear answer related to that. Yes, you can put your affiliate link and sell your own stuff. The other part about it is, Brent, if you have a product and you say, “Hey. You can buy it by clicking here or here,” then you're giving them two options. I'm not quite sure. You'll probably have to test this, but oftentimes people say when you give people too many options for where to buy they're more likely to not buy, so giving them one option to buy. However, the interesting part, and the reason why I say you should test this, is because people trust Amazon. Many people are used to, and comfortable, and actually feel happy feelings when they buy things on Amazon. Perhaps Amazon might be the only way you should do it. Again, weigh these things against each other, test, and experiment. That's really what it's all about.
Brent, I hope that answers your question or at least gives you some thoughts around it. I want to thank you so much for your question today and send you an AskPat t-shirt for having your question featured here on the show. For those of you listening, if you have a question that you'd like potentially featured on the show, just head on over to askpat.com, and you can ask right there on that page. Thank you so much. I appreciate you, and I look forward to serving you in the next episode of Ask Pat.
As always, I love to end with a quote. Today's quote, to finish off this episode and the week, comes from Horace. That quote is, “He has half the deed done who has made a beginning.” Now, what that means is just getting started is half the battle, but that's a lot of the battle. Right? Just get started on that thing that you know that you need to get started on.
All right. Take care, guys. Thanks so much, and I'll see you in the next episode. Bye.